One of the things I like about doing fertility treatments is that with cycle monitoring (ultrasounds and blood tests every few days), I know what my body is doing and when it’s doing it. With cycle monitoring, the doctor can see how the uterine lining is developing, if and how many follicles are growing, of and when a dominant follicle is present, as well as how hormones are behaving. They can predict ovulation to the day and then they check to make sure it actually happened. For me, this time, one round of five days taking letrozole was all it took to induce ovulation. Knowing when ovulation is on the horizon and when it has happened makes it easy to time things. And then, after being in and out of the clinic between two and four times a week for what feels like eternity, as soon as ovulation is done comes the two week wait.
The two week wait is a different experience all together. There’s no monitoring to see if fertilization was successful, no implantation monitoring, no blood tests, no ultrasounds, no trips to the fertility clinic. It’s exactly what it sounds like: two weeks just waiting. I’ve done this a few times before, and every time I go through the same feelings. The first half of the first week it feels like freedom! I can sleep in! I start to feel a bit more myself. Then I start to notice every little thing, every twinge, every cramp, every gas bubble. Since I started tracking, I find myself staring at my chart, trying to find the hidden message: Yes or No. By the start of the second week I am counting down the days until I can take a home pregnancy test. Waiting seems to get harder and harder by the day as I feel myself in this limbo of being both pregnant and not pregnant.
I have been pretty open with people during my whole experience with fertility treatments, and when I mention the date of the appointment to end the two week wait, I simultaneously feel good and bad. I feel good about sharing my excitement, anticipation and nerves; but the bad feeling stems from this little voice in the very back of my mind saying “you’re gonna jinx it, because you’ve said something the test will be negative”. This time around I’m really trying to ignore that voice. I think back on my time with Lily and the one regret I have is that I didn’t share more of that experience, I wish I had written down how the wait had felt, how I felt at the moment I first saw that faint line on the first home pregnancy test, how I felt when the blood test confirmed what I already knew. I wish I had made note and told people about the symptoms I was experiencing during that two week wait that made me think maybe, just maybe, I could be pregnant. I don’t want to make the same mistake again.
I definitely have been having mild cramps during this two week wait. They are quite similar to what I remember early pregnancy pains with Lily being like, but I can’t remember if those ones started before or after I found out about her. I know I had very tender breasts from some point in the two week wait that didn’t stop hurting throughout my pregnancy, I haven’t been having that this time. I have been monitoring my BBT and that is something that I haven’t done previously. My chart this month shows an obvious rise after ovulation (the red cross-hairs) and then a dip at 6DPO (days past ovulation) that could be an implantation dip, with a spike after it that has put my BBT higher than it has been on any of my previous charts. This morning my temp was a little bit lower than it has been since 7DPO,but not by enough of a difference that I couldn’t still be pregnant.
On Saturday, David and I were both feeling pretty curious, so I took a pregnancy test. They don’t recommend taking the tests until around 13DPO to avoid false negatives. A while back I bought bulk pregnancy tests off the internet and I know from my tests with Lily starting at 12DPO that these tests are not very strong. So I wasn’t all that surprised by a negative test at 9DPO. Yesterday I took another, and again, it was negative. About an hour later I went back to check again even though I know that any results outside the test window of 3-10 minutes are invalid. When I looked at the test, there was a very faint line. This really doesn’t count for anything, except that the test from 9DPO didn’t have a line at all ever.
I have no definitive proof one way or the other. And I have to keep waiting for things to either cook more or for the oven to shut off. The two week wait ends on Thursday with a trip to the clinic for a blood test, and at that point I’ll know for sure. For the time being I’m just going to enjoy puzzling over the possibilities.